Comic Book Weekly Reviews – 3/30/11

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It was a pretty decent set of books this week with a few issues that made my jaw drop.  Check out what’s worth your money and what you should avoid if at all possible.

Monthly Comics

Age of X Universe #1 – The main Age of X storyline running through other “X” titles has been pretty solid, this off-shoot looking at some of the Avengers and Spider-Man though is a bit off.  The Avengers storyline suffers from inconsistent art and the story is ok, but nothing amazing.  The Spider-Man story is beyond solid though.  The art is decent, but the story really sticks out.  This first issues is a bit uneven in execution, but definitely has highlights.

Story: 8 Art: 7.75 Overall: 8

American Vampire #13 – Just when you think this series can’t get any better, Scott Snyder and Rafael Albuquerque blow me away.  This issue flashes a bit forward to World War II and to say more would spoil the goodness.  The pacing, plot, characterization is amazing.  So far, this might be one of the best single issues of any comic this year.  Just amazing.

Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10

The Avengers #11 – The combined Avengers teams are fighting Parker Robbins to get back the Infinity Gems as the Watcher narrates and watches on.  The story has a pretty epic feel to it, but it’s the narrative of this issue that really stands out.  I liked the perspective of the writing in an entertaining issue.

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5

Black Panther: The Man Without Fear #516 – There’s lots of moving parts in this issue, but it’s main theme is abuse, whether it’s parents on their children, one class on another or every day violence.  It’s a solid issues continuing the quality of a series that’s one of the best things to come out of Shadowland.  It looks like big things are coming down the pipeline for the Black Panther, and I imagine this series will be playing a big part in it.

Story: 8.5 Art: .8 Overall: 8.5

Captain America #616 – The official 70th Anniversary over sized issue reminds us what makes Captain America great and why in dark times we should be happy that we still have Cap around.  The stories are varied but overall the issue is fantastic and well worth the read.  I couldn’t help but feel a swell of patriotism after reading it.

Story: 9 Art: 9 Overall: 9

5 Ronin #5 – The five issue limited series is over.  The story is ok, and there’s bits that are great, but overall the series was ho-hum.  Maybe as a trade paperback it’d be better, but I can’t say it’s worth the purchase.

Story: 7.5 Art: 8 Overall: 7.75

Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors #8 – It’s Jordan versus Gardner as Kronas’s control over the Corps. grows deeper.  But how do these two save the Green Lantern Corps. when they can’t use their rings?  The third chapter of the War of the Lanterns is ok, but there’s something that’s lacking that was in the first two chapters.

Story: 7.75 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7.5

Incognito: Bad Influences #5 – The second volume of Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips’s pulp action series wraps up and even kept me on my toes.  I can’t wait to see what the third volume holds after the ending of this one.  Such a solid series that shows off how this is one of the best teams out there when it comes to comic book.

Story: 8.75 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.75

Incorruptible #16 – Max Damage’s meeting with the Paradigm wraps up as some fighting happens and some interesting plots move forward.  The series continues to move along as we see what happens when a villain tries to go straight.

Story: 7.5 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.5

Kick-Ass 2 #2 – It feels like forever since the first issue of the second volume of the hit series made it to the stands.  But, this second issue picks up not asking what would a real life super hero be like, but instead what would a super hero team be like.  It’s easy to see where the series is going to go, but it’s over the top violence and great sense of humor make it easy and fun to follow along.

Story: 8.25 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8.25

Punisher: In The Blood #5 – It’s the Punisher versus Jigsaw and with a new series coming up, we get to see the beginning of what to expect.  It’s a decent fight and overall it’s great to see the old Punisher back in business.  Overall, it’s a good, but not great series.

Story: 8 Art: 8 Overall: 8

Scarlet #5 – It’s the end of the first volume as what started off as a simple comic about the individual uprising against a corrupt society has turned into a very real reflection of world events.  Bendis has even decided to reflect upon events in Egypt, Wisconin and Libya and how the series reflects them.  This, by random chance has turned into a very important series.

Story: 9 Art: 9 Overall: 9

Secret Avengers #11 – Who’s John Steele and how did he become corrupted?  This begins that tale and it’s pretty decent so far.

Story: 8 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.25

Thor #621 – The whole World Tree part of the Thor mythology is so convoluted and if you’re not a die-hard fan, you can easily get lost in it all.  I can’t say I know exactly what’s going on, and the story isn’t quite as clear as it should have been.  Really, it all feels like the point is to get a good start to the lead up and buzz generated by this summer’s movie.

Story: 7 Art: 8 Overall: 7.25

The Walking Dead #83 – Holy shit.  My jaw was dropped the entire time reading this and I have tear in my eyes.  Kirkman, you’re one sick and twisted bastard, and I love ya for it.

Story: 10 Art: 9 Overall: 10

Wolverine #7 – Wolverine continues to battle for his soul in a story that just seem like it won’t end.  I’m not a fan of the storyline at all, and can’t wait until we can move on from it.

Story: 6.5 Art: 7.5 Overall: 6.75

X-23 #8 – What would happen when Laura and Daken met?  You get to find out here as X-23 and Gambit head to Madripoor in hopes of shutting down a new Weapon X program and Daken is part of their plan.  The issue is ok, nothing amazing, but overall this’ll be measured at the end of the crossover.

Story: 7.25 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.25

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